Exclusive to Power Line: Koch Industries Responds to New York Times Smears

Yesterday I wrote about the New York Times’ laughable description of the Democrats’ “new strategy” of attacking Charles and David Koch. I documented the fact that the Times itself has been an active participant in the Democrats’ smear campaign against the Koch brothers for years, reporting distortions and rank falsehoods that in at least one case forced a grudging correction from the paper.

I asked Koch Industries’ general counsel, Mark Holden, who sometimes acts as a spokesman for the company, whether he would like to comment on the Times’ account of the Democrats’ new strategy. He responded with these observations:

It is disappointing, but not surprising, to see the NY Times become the launch pad for Senator Reid’s and his allied group Patriot Majority USA’s most recent dishonest and desperate attack campaign against Charles Koch and David Koch. It was very surprising, however, to see the Times’ headline that this was a “new strategy” by the Democratic leadership. For the past several years, the Times has been reporting and opining, and sometimes joining in, the attacks against us.

Indeed. It is revealing to compare Charles and David Koch with the owners and managers of the New York Times Company. The Koch brothers employ a growing, highly-paid work force of 60,000 in the United States, around one-third of whom are unionized. Koch Industries enjoys excellent relationships with its unions. The New York Times Company, on the other hand, employs a shrinking, largely ill-paid work force, and is embroiled in a long-running feud with its unions.

Koch Industries and its subsidiaries produce tangible products that enrich the lives of Americans–among other things, Koch transports and refines oil, makes products that are used in construction, and manufactures a wide array of consumer products that are staples in most American homes. The New York Times Company produces nothing but shoddy left-wing journalism that is of questionable benefit to anyone.

Then we have the roles of the two companies in their communities. Koch Industries and its subsidiaries have been recognized countless times for their many contributions to the communities where they operate. It is fair to say that there is no better corporate citizen than Koch. To take just one instance, Koch and its subsidiaries have been honored hundreds of times by the EPA for their environmental stewardship, which is second to none. And, as most people know, Charles and David Koch are two of the world’s most generous philanthropists. David alone has donated well over $1 billion dollars for medical research, the arts, and so on. You can read generally about the Koch Family foundations and philanthropy here.

The New York Times? Not so much. The Times and its owners contribute to a few philanthropic enterprises, but with nowhere near the commitment to making the world a better place that the Koch brothers have shown. I like this, too: the Times web site talks about the company’s environmental stewardship:

In addition, the Company’s primary business is journalism, and global warming and greenhouse gas emissions are topics that it covers extensively. The New York Times spotlights these issues on both its editorial, Op-Ed and Op-Docs pages and throughout its news coverage.

Some people actually take care of the environment, others write editorials about it.

My point is this: the New York Times doesn’t just lack the business expertise to attack the Koch brothers, it lacks the moral standing, as well.

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